3 Unexpected Sources of Publicity for Your Startup

As a new entrepreneur, you might overlook valuable sources of publicity for your business in favor of aiming for big press logos. But winning press from major online outlets doesn’t always impact your bottom line, nor is it cost efficient for new businesses.

There’s a good chance that the following unexpected sources of publicity will get you in front of the right target audiences. Plus, since so many entrepreneurs aren’t going after these types of publicity, they can even be easier to achieve than a feature in a big-time publication.

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Here are three unexpected sources of publicity that can have a big impact on your new business:

Become part of a case study

Perhaps you have written a case study for your business. Maybe you have written about how your clients have gotten great results from your product or service.

But have you ever been part of a case study? Have you been the success story for someone else’s business?

I have, and I got numerous benefits from it. I didn’t wait to be asked, either. Instead, I emailed a software company I was using at the time and asked if I could take part in a case study because I was getting such great results from the company’s product.

I then used this case study to help sell my cold email copywriting services as well as my cold email course. So, I was able to get visibility from the company’s audience while also strategically promoting the case study to my own audience.

How to get the most out of this publicity source:

  • Get featured in a case study for a software or service that you’ve benefitted from, that is also utilized by your target audience.
  • Make sure that the topic of the case study is relevant to your business, so that you can share it with your audience as a way to nurture leads and prove your credibility in your field.
  • Work with a company that will promote the case study to their social media audience and email list, and request verification of this before you take part.

Collaborate with competitors and similar businesses

Depending on your business model, you might be able to work with your competitors as collaborators. Allow me to explain. If you have a service-based business model, such as offering copywriting or accounting services, there are probably only so many clients you can take on. You might serve a specific geographic area or a specific niche. In other words, you can’t take on every possible client in the world.

For that reason, your competitors aren’t really your competitors. They’re fellow entrepreneurs who can serve the clients you can’t. As a copywriter, I’ve collaborated with other copywriters for visibility opportunities dozens of times.

To execute this, you can reach out to potential collaborators in your industry and organize an event to help increase everyone’s visibility. Or you can pitch yourself as a workshop guest to the owner of a popular Facebook group or YouTube show.

How to get the most out of this publicity source:

  • Don’t be afraid to participate even if your target audience doesn’t totally overlap with the target audience of the event (for example, I don’t work with copywriters, but rather software companies). Think of this as a networking opportunity and a way to grow your referral network.
  • Only give a talk on something that you’re an expert in and that is relevant to your products or services. This way, you have content to share with your audience and it fits in line with your overall marketing strategy.

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Participate in conferences or summits offered by large brands

When you’re a guest expert for a popular conference or summit, you can get a lot of leads if the audience overlap is the right fit for your business. Large companies often have tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of people on their email list.

After I received a message on LinkedIn from an event manager asking me to participate in a customer experience event and decided to participate, I was featured alongside leaders from Adobe, Twitter, Slack and more. Because my clientele are software companies, this did wonders for building up my brand’s credibility and authority.

If invitations to participate in virtual events aren’t exactly coming your way yet, make a list of event managers in your industry and pitch yourself to them.

How to get the most out of this publicity source:

  • Promotion, promotion, promotion! Don’t forget that being featured alongside well-known brands is a big win for you. Share the event all over your social media channels multiple times with a variety of post formats.
  • Create a free resource so you can grow your email list from attendees. If you already have a free resource, like an e-book, double check that email automations are set up correctly and see if there are any edits to the content that need to be made.

Publicity is important. It helps you get in front of new audiences, grow your brand authority and generate content to share on social media all at the same time. It’s common for entrepreneurs to desire fancy press logos that are challenging to obtain, but perhaps the best publicity for your business is hiding in plain sight.

Originally published Jan. 31, 2021.

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